And today’s acronym is …

UNESCO, of course.

I thought it was fake news when I saw the news alert last night. Here are a few things to watch and read, to help you talk about the organization and the news about it.

The statement by the director about the U.S. withdrawal

A little background about how this isn’t the first time the U.S. has withdrawn or refused to help fund it:

“Why the U.S. Has Such a Rocky Relationship With UNESCO” from Slate

And a recent addition to UNESCO’s World Heritage list: the island off Fukuoka called Okinoshima, which apparently does not allow women (from The Guardian):

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“Show up. Dive in. Stay at it.”

President Obama gave his farewell speech yesterday. You can watch the whole thing here:

Here’s the transcript. UPDATE April 2017: That link seems to be dead now. I wonder why. Here’s the transcript from the LA Times.

And here is a highlights clip:

Here is one summary/analysis: “Eight of the Biggest Takeaways From President Obama’s Farewell Address” (from NBC)

Here are highlights of some other presidents’ farewell speeches: “Obama’s Farewell Address: How Presidents Use This Moment Of Reflection” (from NPR)

One of my favorite parts:

“Ultimately, that’s what our democracy demands. It needs you. Not just when there’s an election, not just when your own narrow interest is at stake, but over the full span of a lifetime. If you’re tired of arguing with strangers on the internet, try to talk with one in real life. If something needs fixing, lace up your shoes and do some organizing. If you’re disappointed by your elected officials, grab a clipboard, get some signatures, and run for office yourself. Show up. Dive in. Stay at it.”

The day after

Working on these today: the 5 (now 7) stages of grief —

But this post from Wait But Why was a good read and a good reminder that “It’s going to be okay.”  Clinton’s and Obama’s graceful concession speeches are a good start towards trying to bridge the huge chasm dividing the American people.

One takeaway for now? Half of the population is devastated but the other half is elated; we have to understand each other.

Another takeaway? It really is important to vote. And a reminder about how to accept defeat gracefully. And one person’s to-do list for the day after.